Around the World Preview – 28 & 30 November 2021
From the snowy hills of Siberia to the sunny skies of Peru -
Hello, from my my little home studio on the shores of Belfast Lough. This week’s preview is a little earlier than usual.
Around the World is on Slice Audio, Ferry FM, and Radio Larne on Sundays at 10:00 pm to midnight. On Tuesdays at 7:00 pm the show is broadcast on Bangor FM, Lisburn’s 98FM and FM105 Down Community Radio.
This week’s Featured Album: The 77-year-old Afro-Peruvian singer Susana Baca has filled concert halls in Lima, New York, and Havana. In 1997 she recorded for David Byrne’s record label Luaka Bop, she has had multiple Latin Grammy nominations and she has been the Peruvian government’s Minister for Culture. She was the second Afro-Peruvian cabinet minister in the history of independent Peru. In November 2011 she was elected to the Organization of American States (OAS) as the President of the Commission of Culture for the period 2011–13.
She was born in the outskirts of the country’s capital Lima and now lives on the Pacific Coast.
Susana Baca has been releasing music independently to begin with, for 30 years and this new album Palabras Urgentes – Urgent Truths – celebrates her 50th anniversary as a singer. There will be four tracks on this week’s show.
Who is the Horslips of Tuva? One of the founding ideas for Around the World was to ask “Who is the Horslips of [insert name of county or region]?” This works if you know who Horslips were, but I have looked into the puzzled faces of people from other countries who - when I have explained this - seem to think I must be little soft in the head.
Khöömei Beat is a five-piece band that mixes traditional amd modern instruments, traditional throat singing and (what was once called) rock sensibilities.
Bailak Mongush is a renowned Kyzyl-based drummer and percussionist. Kang-Khüler Saaya is a throat singer who plays doshpuluur. The doshpuluur is a long-necked Tuvan lute. Ai-Khaan Oorzhak is also a throat singer who plays the igil, a two-stringed Tuvan musical instrument played by bowing the strings. They combine with Shoraan Ochur on bass and cellist Aidyng Sedii.
Formed in 2017, the band’s music (according to their promoter) “has been recognized globally as a unique and powerful form of music that has spawned many imitators, and itself has undergone a remarkable evolution over the last 30 years of its existence on the world stage.” There’s more here on their website.
It’s November and this is one of the best albums I’ve heard all year.
And the winner of the “Who is the Horslips of the Russian Republic of Tuva is … Khöömei Beat!
In local news: It’s been a busy year for Dani Larkin since the release of the Notes for a Maiden Warrior. Nomination and performance at the Northern Ireland Music Prize, nomination for Emerging Artist at the RTE Radio 1 Folk Awards, a live performance on BBC Radio 4’s Womans Hour and a lot of other media exposure. And mightily deserved.
Other music to listen listen out for: Yarima Blanco a leading virtuoso of the Cuban tres – the Cuban guitar who has come to prominence – beyond her home country – in recent months.
Fixi and Nicolas Giraud – he a French Jazz Trumpeter and François-Xavier Bossard – the French accordionist known as Fixi. I’ll be playing Tempo Tempo a celebration of the music of drummer Tony Allen – the Nigerian drummer who died April 2020.
Barbora Xu is originally from Czech Republic. She has been living in Taiwan and Finland, studying traditional singing styles and zithers, specifically Chinese Gu Zheng and Finnish Kanteles. In 2015-16, she conducted a fieldwork study on the development of Bunun indigenous music of Taiwan. In 2018, Barbora graduated as an expert on Chinese culture at the centre of East Asian Studies of the University of Turku. She has been studying guzheng under the supervision of well-renowned Taiwanese teacher We Dedong and Wu Juhua. In the present, she studies the Global Music Programme at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.
There’s another track from the second collaborative album by Omar Sosa and Seckou Keita. This is the track I played last time.
Then there is is Indian scottish bagpipe musican Snake Charmer’s new single Mehndi Da:
Franck Biyong grew-up “in Gabon, Nigeria and Ivory Coast before settling in the UK at age 14, (He) lived in households filled with good music. Little wonder why the towering Cameroonian artist is a composer, guitar player, singer, band leader and producer. This master of musical interpretation recalls American Jazz guitarist, Wes Montgomery’s “Canadian Sunset” as the song that set him down his musical path as a pre-teen."
The Around the World archive on Mixcloud: https://www.mixcloud.com/davysims/
Slice Audio: https://www.slice.audio/
Ferry FM: https://ferryfm.com/
Radio Larne: https://www.radiolarne.co.uk/
And on Radio Garden
Bangor FM 107.9: http://radio.garden/listen/bangor-fm-107-9/IycUhUbT
Lisburn’s 98FM: http://radio.garden/listen/facebook/ASeqAEl8
FM105 Down Community Radio: http://radio.garden/listen/fm-105-down-community-radio/K8lBDGFf